Be Nice

When I visit hospitals and people ask how those hospitals are, the most resounding compliment anyone can give is, “Everyone is very nice!”  What do I mean by that and how could you facilitate that feeling in your place of work/school?  People in positive work environments are welcoming, friendly, and humble.

Be Welcoming

When there is someone new or a visitor, say hello.  Smile.  Introduce yourself.  “Hey, you must be the new locum/faculty/intern.  My name is John Smith.”  Don’t include “Dr.”, that’s a rookie move.  Shake hands.  Say, “Nice to meet you.  I look forward to working with you!”  That’s it.  It’s not hard.  It’s a small bit of effort, but if people DON’T take that small effort, what signal do you think that sends?  That this new person or visitor is not worth even a small expenditure of energy.  That’s a bit insulting.

Be Friendly

Smile when you interact with the new person/visitor.  Ask them some question(s) which show you are interested in them- where they’re from, where they went to school, where they are staying, etc.  If appropriate, invite them to out-of-work open social functions.  Treat them as an appreciated, valuable colleague.

Be Humble

Ask the new person/visitor their opinion.  Acknowledge that they may know something you do not.  Make them know how they are contributing by showing appreciation for their efforts and knowledge.

As a professional in veterinary medicine, you ARE a leader, even if you’re not an administrator.  The way you act and treat others will be observed, and others will follow your lead.  If you treat new people and visitors nicely, it will help create a positive culture and those new people and visitors will appreciate the effort.  Hopefully they will enjoy working there, and will tell others they enjoyed working there.  Positivity is everyone’s job.  Do your part.

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